The Positive Impact Of President Trump’s Foreign Policy

The Gatestone Institute posted an article today about the impact of President Trump’s foreign policy on Iran. The article reminds us that because of the Trump administration’s decision not to extend its waiver for Iran’s eight biggest oil buyers; China, India, Greece, Italy, Taiwan, Japan, Turkey and South Korea, the economy of Iran is shrinking rapidly. Because of this, Iran is not able to fund terrorist groups at previous levels.

The article reports:

Before the US Department of Treasury leveled secondary sanctions against Iran’s oil and gas sectors, Tehran was exporting over two million barrel a day of oil. Currently, Tehran’s oil export has gone down to less than 200,000 barrel a day, which represents a decline of roughly 90% in Iran’s oil exports.

Iran has the second-largest natural gas reserves and the fourth-largest proven crude oil reserves in the world, and the sale of these resources account for more than 80 percent of its export revenues. The Islamic Republic therefore historically depends heavily on oil revenues to fund its military adventurism in the region and sponsor militias and terror groups. Iran’s presented budget in 2019 was nearly $41 billion, while the regime was expecting to generate approximately $21 billion of it from oil revenues. This means that approximately half of Iran’s government revenue comes from exporting oil to other nations.

Even though Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, boasts about the country’s self-sufficient economy, several of Iran’s leaders recently admitted the dire economic situation that the government is facing. Speaking in the city of Kerman on November 12, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani acknowledged for the first time that “Iran is experiencing one of its hardest years since the 1979 Islamic revolution” and that “the country’s situation is not normal.”

The result of this is protests and demonstrations against the government.

The article reports:

Iran’s national currency, the rial, also continues to lose value: it dropped to historic lows. One US dollar, which equaled approximately 35,000 rials in November 2017, now buys you nearly 110,000 rials.

In addition, the Islamic Republic appears to be scrambling to compensate for the loss of revenues it is encountering. A few days ago, for example, Iran’s leaders tripled the price of gasoline. It appears a sign of desperation to generate revenues in order to fund their military adventurism in the region and support their proxies and terror groups.

This increase immediately led people to rise up against the government. In the last few days, several Iranian cities have become the scenes of widespread protests and demonstrations. The protests first erupted in Ahvaz and then spread to many other cities in the Khuzestan province as well as in the capital Tehran, and Kermanshah, Isfahan, Tabriz, Karadj, Shiraz, Yazd, Boushehr, Sari, Khorramshahr, Andimeshk, Dezful, Behbahan and Mahshahr.

Tehran’s diminishing resources have also caused Iranian leaders to cut funds to the Palestinian terror group Hamas and the Lebanese militant group, Hezbollah. Hamas was forced to introduce “austerity plans” while Hassan Nasrallah, the leader of Iran’s proxy, Hezbollah, has also called on his group’s fundraising arm “to provide the opportunity for jihad with money and also to help with this ongoing battle.”

The economic weapon being wielded by President Trump appears to be the safest way to deal with Iran. War would not be a good option, but economic war has at least a possibility of being successful.

Looking For The Underlying Cause Of The Embassy Attacks

CBN News posted a story today about one of the possible causes of the current riots (protests) in the Middle East. Admittedly, the attacks on they Libyan and Egyptian Embassies were probably related to the anniversary of the September 11 attacks and the call for the release of the blind sheik, but there is another aspect of the story.

Gary Lane at CBN reminds us:

At a recent gathering of his supporters in Beirut, Nasrallah (Hezbollah‘s Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah) called on the international community to adopt a law that would prohibit attacks against any “divine” religion.

Each year Muslim nations, often led by Pakistan, propose that the United Nations pass a defamation of religion law. The United States and other Western democracies have beaten back those efforts.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, speaking before the United Nations, stated:

“We are living through a period of unease. We are also seeing incidents of intolerance and hatred that are then exploited by others. Voices of moderation and calm need to make themselves heard at this time,” Ban told the assembly Tuesday.

“We all need to speak up in favor of mutual respect and understanding of the values and beliefs of others. The United Nations must rise to the moment,” he said.

Read the fine print here–the law the Muslims want would prohibit attacks against any ‘divine’ religion. Who determines which religions are ‘divine’?

Hang on to the First Amendment–it is coming under attack from the U.N.

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